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Word Reaches Us

by Alice Walker

Word reaches us
that you are sleeping, sleeping.
Dismayed
we have turned to the sea.
We encounter among others
walking there
a sense of what we have lost:
the broad expanse of humanity’s
sensitivity to the oneness of itself.
Gabrielle,
while you sleep, resting your nimble
brain, we think of walking with you
in the valley
of the shadow of death; holding
you up.
We hope you can feel our grief;
our sorrow vast
like the ocean that draws us.
We know in this moment you teach us many things:
how all across the world
there is no one who deserves this fate.
We know we must bleach and sterilize our
tongues,
brighten with understanding
all our dark thoughts.
Sister, whom I never met
except in this pain that has so
wounded you
thank you for reminding us
through your suffering
and your suspenseful sleep
that we must change.

Read at St. Lydia’s on November 3, 2013

Posted in: Poems

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